Progressive Dispensationalism

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by evangelist6589, Jun 3, 2014.

  1. evangelist6589

    evangelist6589
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    Anyone hold to this view and if so what is your defense of it? My church is Classic of which I agree like most dispensationalist. This rules me out from being Reformed and Covenant theology, but does not rule me out from being a Calvinist. Is progressive a good theology? I am not as smart in this area of theology.
     
  2. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    First, one has to understand the essentials of Traditional Dispensationalism before understanding how Progressive Dispensationalism differs. Those essentials for traditional dispensationalism are:
    1) The Church and Israel are distinct and separate. The Old Testament promises made by God to Israel will yet be fulfilled. The Church did not inherit those promises when it came into being at Pentecost.

    2) In all that He does, God's ultimate purpose is to glorify Himself. Though other theological system claim all that He does is toward the salvation of man, that isn't possible or logical, given all He has done that had no effect on man's salvation.

    3) A literal hermeneutic is used in biblical interpretation. What it says is what it means, and this includes all prophecies, fulfilled or not at this time. This includes literal interpretations of figures of speech, provided that interpretation leaves them in their context. "Raining cats and dogs" means it's raining heavily. Hebrew and Greek both have idioms of this nature that should left in their original meanings.​
    It is this third caveat where Traditional and Progressive Dispensationalism generally part ways. Progressives do not hold to a "normal hermeneutic," in that they essentially hold to similar interpretations of Scripture, but come to differing conclusions about them. This is referred to as a "complimentary hermeneutic."

    Where it is most obvious is the issue of David's throne. Progressives claim that Christ, at this moment, sits on the throne of David. Traditionalists state that, although God promised that there would never cease to be one of David's descendants on the throne, there were, in fact, many times when there were not literal descendants reigning over Israel, even before His Incarnation. Further, traditionalists hold to the idea that the throne of Christ at the right hand of the Father is not the throne of David. This points to the differences of interpretation regarding the thousand-year reign.

    Traditionalists believe it is a literal 1,000-year reign in the Temple of post-Tribulational Israel. Progressives, because they believe Christ already sits on the Davidic Throne, believe the 1,000 years is allegorical for a very long period of time.

    It is ironic that progressives insist on a looser hermeneutic, but on the issue of David's throne, cling to an overly literal interpretation of God's promise to David regarding his throne and his descendants. But then, they have to in order to make it fit with their belief about the Millennial Reign.

    I'm a traditionalist. I believe the progressives play too fast and loose with Scripture in order to edit Israel out of God's future history.
     
    #2 thisnumbersdisconnected, Jun 3, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 3, 2014
  3. preachinjesus

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    I am a progressive dispensationalist.

    In my studies I became convinced of its veracity and more thoroughgoing hermeneutical method. Though I tend towards covenant theology occasionally, I most often come back to progressive dispensationalism.

    You simply cannot be a Calvinist and hold to dispensationalism of any kind. But we've been through this before.
     
  4. evangelist6589

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    Which confuses me... MacArthur is a Calvinist and yet a Disp. The church down the road from me holds the five points, yet Disp eschatology. Explain this..
     
  5. Yeshua1

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    Traditionally, Calvinists are those who hold to the entire Covenant theology model, not just the Doctrines of grace, so those like Dr Mac and myself would be seen as being Monergists, not Calvinists!
     
  6. Van

    Van
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    Let's look at this carefully

    1) Yes, I hold to progressive dispensationalism.

    2) My defense comes from simply reading Galatians chapter 3. Rather than being separate, born anew believers in Christ become children of the promise, thus one group with the church grafted into all Israel.

    3) Yes, I believe progressive dispensationalism is sound theology, being consistent with all scripture.

    4) Post #2 does not present the actual doctrine of PD, but a distortion concocted by traditional dispensationists. Pay no attention to it.

    5) I will post subsequently, the actual view. It is simple and not difficult to grasp. Then we can discuss it.
     
  7. Van

    Van
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    Dispensationalism is a theological term used to describe a method of interpreting the Bible. Progressive Dispensation is one version of many that differs from Traditional Dispensationalism. Dispensationalists believe Christ will govern upon David’s throne here on earth for one thousand years, or in other words they take those passages literally. Therefore Dispensationalists like to excoriate the “Reformed, Replacement Theology, Amillennialists” as not interpreting the Bible literally and therefore we stand on higher ground. And so it goes in theological debate.

    Sadly the first thing to grasp is that the main difference between Covenant Theology (errant Amillennialists) and we, the virtuous Dispensationalists, has little to do with the idea that God governs man in differing ways. Both schools of thought agree God deals with man in different ways. No the chief difference is in our views of an End Times dispensation. Basically both schools agree on: 1) Dispensation of Innocence or how God dealt with man before the fall; 2) Dispensation of Conscious or how God deals with man without the Law; 3) Dispensation of the Law or how God deals with man with the Law; 4) Dispensation of Grace or how God deals with man in Christ Jesus before the Second Coming; 5) the Millennial Kingdom or how God deals with all Israel on earth after the Second Coming; and 6) the Eternal Kingdom or how God deals with his children in eternity. Now the chief difference is that the Amillennialists believe the fifth age is going on right now in heaven so the Second Coming will inaugurate the sixth dispensation. Hence, Amillennialists are against the idea of a thousand year reign of Christ on earth. Rather, they hold to the idea that the Church replaced Israel (Replacement Theology) and the promises to Israel have been transferred to the Church and are being fulfilled in heaven during the dispensation of grace.

    Let me say here that the above represents my understanding of the issue and I am quite sure I have missed the mark in the details, but I believe the above properly represents the general idea. But now to the heart of the post, what is the difference between a traditional dispensationalist and a progressive dispensationalist?

    “Traditional dispensationalists typically see the 'church age' as an interruption or parenthetical period in God's dealing with Israel. The church is seen as unrelated to Israel and the new covenant promised in Jeremiah 31:31-34.” (Tim Warner)

    Progressive dispensationalists see the Church Age as a progression where God deals with the faithful in a new covenant enabled by the blood of Christ, and this Dispensation of Grace is available to those with the Law (Jews) and those without the Law (Gentiles who have heard the gospel in light of the Old Testament). Some but not all Old Testament promises apply to the church now, and are not being held in abeyance pending the Second Coming. Thus I can read Galatians 3 and it matches my theology perfectly. Same for Romans 9-11.

    Another area where I fundamentally disagree with many is that I believe God is using multiple dispensations at the same time. Therefore today, three dispensations are in effect, God is dealing with those without the Law, who have not heard the gospel presented in light of an understanding of the Old Testament (Dispensation of Conscience); God is dealing with those who have the Law which includes Jews and non Jews who have heard the gospel in light of the Old Testament but have not accepted the gospel and have not been born again (Dispensation of the Law); and three, God is dealing with born again believers, the Dispensation of Grace.
     
  8. evangelist6589

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    Thanks brother. Monetgists heh? I am not or I forget that term. There has to be a book on this subject.
     
  9. Van

    Van
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    An interesting topic to discuss is the meaning of the phrase "All Israel." Obviously, traditional dispensations see the phrase meaning old covenant saints, whereas progressive dispensationalists like me see the phrase meaning both old covenant saints and new covenant saints. Quite a difference!

    Romans 9:6, But it is not as though the word of God has failed. For they are not all Israel who are descended from Israel;

    Romans 11:24 For if you were cut off from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and were grafted contrary to nature into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these who are the natural branches be grafted into their own olive tree?

    25 For I do not want you, brethren, to be uninformed of this mystery—so that you will not be wise in your own estimation—that a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in;

    26 and so all Israel will be saved; just as it is written,

    “The Deliverer will come from Zion,
    He will remove ungodliness from Jacob.”
    27 “This is My covenant with them,
    When I take away their sins.”​
     
    #9 Van, Jun 5, 2014
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 5, 2014
  10. RLBosley

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    Progressive dispy... a step in the right direction.
     
  11. Van

    Van
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    Thanks RL, we agree about the direction, not sure if you see us departing Covenant Theology or Traditional Dispensationalism, but whatever we are departing we are moving toward truth.
     
  12. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    Providing you hold to the definition of "truth" being very loose.
     
  13. Van

    Van
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    Yes, that is what we need, more suggestions of malfeasance, rather than disclosure of the differing doctrines - traditional versus progressive dispensationalism.
     
  14. thisnumbersdisconnected

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    In case you hadn't noticed, Van, I examined the major differences several posts ago. Do you regularly participate in threads which you have not read?
     
  15. Van

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    Yet another ad hominem, without a shed of content. I specifically addressed the falsehoods of post #2.

    You wrongly suggested Progressive Dispensationalists do not believe in the 1000 year reign of Christ on David's throne here on earth.
     
  16. Van

    Van
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    Apparently no one has any more questions concerning Progressive Dispensationalism.
     
  17. kyredneck

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  18. RLBosley

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    Is "both" an acceptable answer? :smilewinkgrin:
     
  19. RLBosley

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    Great link. I've read this before, but a refresher is always good. :thumbsup:
     
  20. Greektim

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    PDism is basically "kissing cousins" w/ Covenantal Premillism. And that is just inches away from full blown amillennialism (once they work out their metanarrative biblical theology).

    I honestly think there is some who teach at DTS who are PD so they can keep their job. Were it not for that, they would abandon the "dispie" moniker all together. Only speculation though.
     

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